Musky - Lure/Color Choice

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Sam Ubl
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Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby Sam Ubl » Sat Mar 06, 2010 8:59 am

Autumn leaves are never ignored. Their effervescence draws your eye from the beginning of their turnover until the snow covers their grounded reflection. As winter melts away and spring rains fertilize the defrosted ground, only then is the new greenery superlative to the colors of fall. It's a cornerstone to the refreshing warmth of summer,yet it's a short-lived refreshment as our eyes grow used to the greenery. Only when the wind shifts and a strong breeze suggests a storm is approaching do we again turn our attention back to the leaves. While still green, they flip to their dull side as if to warn us of the weather to come, and so I got to thinking.

Muskies are predators by nature, yet sometimes by choice. What draws their attention besides the feeling in their lateral line and mandible's sensory pores? Ultimately, what draws their eye? Water displacement and relative vibration surely excites our quarry, so much so that a blind musky can effectively feed. While the theory that color doesn't make a difference can be proven at times, it surely can't be the staple in every scenario.

As musky fishermen, we talk about color all the time; it's a popular discussion. When to throw natural versus artificial colors seems to be the mainstay for these conversations, and surely they go deeper, such as the idea of natural colors lacking a visual profile, or the concept of the purkinje shift. As a boy my father first introduced me to the
turning leaf concept I described at the end of my first paragraph. It's a theory that has planted a garden of ideas I base a lot of my lure color choices on.

The idea, while not my own, of natural paintjobs of lures imitating a relative forage base and lacking a visual profile is an interesting one. Surely fish are patterned according to their primary niche for camouflaging purposes, theirs little to no question there. Does its relationship to a muskies strike or lack there of go beyond that simple aspect? I believe it does, and once again I'll refer back to my first paragraph.

Why are juvenile muskies easier to catch? Sure, they may not have fallen victim to barbed hooks yet, but could it be they aren't yet bored of their prey? In the first couple years of a muskies life, they feed more often and grow rapidly compared to a larger, older fish. To them, life might just be a little more fun as their youth and smaller size allows them more energy to chase down prey. Imagine a hungry energetic child in a candy store and how sticky their fingers could become if you let them touch all the variety that appeals to them. As an adult, I'm assuming you would be less enthused by the spectrum of colors as their appeal may only compromise a severe craving or hunger. Much the same, I believe that a relatively large musky who has lived amongst the perch, suckers, bluegills, etc. may no longer see the excitement they once did in their adolescent years. Furthermore, no longer are they as vulnerable to be caught on just about anything you throw at them like their younger kin.

This theory doesn't resolute to boredom alone, rather it can spin off another direction. Assuming the boredom theory holds true, much the same as our enthusiasm fades with the constant greenery of summer, suffice it to say that artificial colors can trip the trigger you feel half way back on your cast's retrieve. Beyond the science of the purkinje shift, where differences in color contrast under different levels of illumination can increase lure visibility, lies a simpler perspective - the significance of change. While almost all musky lures are shaped or assembled to imitate a forage species by movement and profile, perhaps what distinguishes an buyer from a window shopper is the change in color.

By no means am I suggesting that natural colors don't work, in fact, over two-thirds of my tackle reflect natural paintjobs, blades and skirts. I also utilize the concept of purkinje shifts to the fullest and take head to the idea of natural camouflaging falling victim to a lack of visual profile. I'll never be one to profess that color doesn't matter as all is relative to the circumstances. Yes, a blind fish can be caught, but perhaps the next time you set out to catch one of the other 99% of the species you'll consider more than the "hold your hand up to the sky" theory when deciding what color to use.
:idea:


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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby dan » Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:40 am

Your quite the writer Sam.. 8-)
Todd caught my attention last summer while musky fishing when I was looking around at the hundred or so boats on Pewaukee lake. Todd said the DNR had done some shocking to remove carp, or count fish or whatever, but anyway,they brought up a musky that was supposedly very close to state record size. Todd claims nobody ever caught this fish on hook and line before, or after the DNR measured and released it.
The shocking thing to me was that looking around at the fisherman traffic one would have to think that fish would have at least one lure a day pass in front of it during the summer... But its really hard to get the huge old ones to bite. One would have to think, a fish don't get to be that big without eating...
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby tresleggos » Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:02 am

makes no sense to me....they brought a old mature big fatty ski into pewaukee to take out carp? i fish pewaukee pretty freguently and have caught many fish 40-52 inches , by far the best lake in the state for the amount of pressure it gets from fisherman and boaters. I could never see a big slob never getting a hook in it. or it has gotten a hook in it many times and just has busted off, or the fish is dead now?? either was sounds interesting
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby dan » Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:06 am

makes no sense to me....they brought a old mature big fatty ski into pewaukee to take out carp?

You misunderstood Eric... They didn't put it there to control carp, it was caught and released by DNR while they were shocking carp accidentally.
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby tresleggos » Mon Mar 08, 2010 3:53 am

excuse my stupidity dan......thats cool. wonder how big it was.....prob. my 52.5 i released 5 years ago...... :)
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby dan » Mon Mar 08, 2010 5:10 am

Eric, lets see a pic of that beast! Thats a man law violation mentioning a 50+ inch musky and not posting a pic!
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby Casper » Mon Mar 08, 2010 1:58 pm

dan wrote:Eric, lets see a pic of that beast! Thats a man law violation mentioning a 50+ inch musky and not posting a pic!

x2
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Sam Ubl
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby Sam Ubl » Tue Mar 09, 2010 1:58 am

tresleggos wrote:makes no sense to me....they brought a old mature big fatty ski into pewaukee to take out carp? i fish pewaukee pretty freguently and have caught many fish 40-52 inches , by far the best lake in the state for the amount of pressure it gets from fisherman and boaters. I could never see a big slob never getting a hook in it. or it has gotten a hook in it many times and just has busted off, or the fish is dead now?? either was sounds interesting


To further the idea of ridding the carp, I should mention that similar to Lac LaBelle, Flathead Cats were released into Pewaukee Lake to help control the carp and the stunted bluegills.

More than likely a fish of record proportion has been caught before in the years it took for it to grow the size it has in a Lake like Pewee. Catching that smart ol' girl now is the hard part. . . I try to about 4 days a week ;)
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby tresleggos » Wed Mar 10, 2010 3:36 pm

here ya go .........
night fishing pewaukee, white homemade bucktail spinnerbait..........
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby Sam Ubl » Thu Mar 11, 2010 2:02 am

Beautiful! Now let's talk night colors - I'll start a thread this afternoon.
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby Hodag Hunter » Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:36 am

Nice fish Tres.
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby magicman54494 » Thu Mar 11, 2010 5:30 am

I read the entire post 2 times and I'm still confused (which is'nt hard to do). So, what color lure should I use? What is the "hold your hand up to the sky" the theory? What does the leaves turning on the trees have to do with lure color selection? How does the purkinje effect effect lure selection?
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Re: Musky - Lure/Color Choice

Unread postby tresleggos » Thu Mar 11, 2010 6:41 am

ill tell you one thing now, basic fishing rule colors you should use change daily for panfish to muskies its never the same colors......for musky i change constantly but ive been VERY successful on white , esp. at night since white shows up better in the dark and can see it before every figure 8


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